Everyday violence of immigration related ethno-racial profiling and mistreatment: A mixed methods approach to understanding immigration policy as a structural determinants of health
Public health scholars have called for research into the impact of state level immigration policies on the public's health and have recognized these policies may exacerbate existing racial and ethnic disparities among immigrant populations and their co-ethnics. Objective: The purpose of this study was to apply the theory of everyday violence to explore immigration policy and militarization of the US-Mexico border as a structural determinant of health. Methods: Through qualitative and quantitative data, the prevalence and type of direct and indirect experiences of immigration related ethno- racial profiling, mistreatment and resistance to institutionalized victimization were explored among 499 Mexican border farmworkers during the years 2005-2007. Results: Farmworkers were predominately US citizens and permanent residents with more than two decades working in US agriculture. Approximately 25% described a personally experienced and/ or witnessed immigration related mistreatment encounter, categorized as verbal, physical and or psychological mistreatment by an immigration official. Approximately 75% of all mistreatment encounters occurred in a non US-port of entry community location, and more than half were experienced personally and or reported by female farmworkers who were 30% of the total sample. Conclusion: Farmworkers described living and working in a highly militarized environment, whereby immigration related ethno-racial profiling and mistreatment were common immigration law enforcement practices. This paper argues for the inclusion of immigration policy that sanctions the institutional practices of discrimination, such as ethno-racial profiling and mistreatment by immigration officials, as a structural determinant of health and a form of everyday violence.
Public health or related public policy
Systems thinking models (conceptual and theoretical models), applications related to public health
Describe the prevalence and type of direct and indirect experiences of immigration related ethno- racial profiling, mistreatment and resistance to institutionalized victimization
Keyword(s): Violence, Policy/Policy Development
Presenting author's disclosure statement:
Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have a 10 years history in binational/border health research and practice. I conceptualized this study, and performed all qualitative and quantitative analysis.
Any relevant financial relationships? No
I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines,
and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed
in my presentation.